International football takes centre stage once more, with the 2022 World Cup only just over a year away and some of the biggest teams in Europe are doing all they can to cement their place in Qatar. Often seen as an unwelcome distraction for clubs, the penultimate international break of 2021 promises to be fascinating – with some of the biggest sides doing battle and the UEFA Nations League also taking centre stage.
Soccer – International Break Predictions
UEFA Nations League – Outright Winner
France – $3.15
Despite enduring a relatively quiet Euro 2020, France are still deemed by many to be the side to beat in European football and this current crop of players already have the 2018 World Cup in the bag. Belgium will provide a stern test in their first game, but should they come through that, they will fancy their chances against Italy or Spain in the final.
Belgium – $4
The ‘Golden Generation’ of Belgian football has often flattered to deceive, with some of the best players in European football in the Belgian side, yet they have no major trophies to show for it. It feels very much make or break for Roberto Martinez over the next 12 months and he will be keen to get off to a good start here.
Italy – $4.33
Euro 2020 champions Italy are riding the crest of a wave under Roberto Mancini and in front of their home fans here in the Nations League, they will be a tough side to stop. They have a team packed with youth and experience in equal measure and with plenty of big game knowhow, they look slightly overpriced to go all the way.
Spain – $4.5
Although they are seen as rank outsiders in this event, Spain are always dangerous in any competition. They are well managed by Luis Enrique, a man who has played his whole professional career at the highest level and if they get ticking here, they could be a difficult side to stop.
FIFA European World Cup Qualifiers
Andorra vs England – Estadi Nacional
Proverbial minnows Andorra host England in what is a true David vs Goliath match up in the Pyrenees. Andorra have a solitary win to their name so far in World Cup qualifying, managing to beat San Marino and they will know all too well the magnitude of the task facing them here. Gareth Southgate’s England reached the final of Euro 2020 and are a side in serious form and they should have no issues in emerging victorious here.
Betting tip: England to win the match ($1.04) – Bet @ Sportsbet
England to win 5-0
Scotland vs Israel – Hampden Park
High-flying Scotland will be looking to press home their advantage in World Cup Qualifying Group F, as they host Israel. Steve Clarke’s side are a well drilled outfit and although catching group leaders Denmark looks a long way off, a win here would boost their qualification chances enormously. Israel meanwhile are the closest side to Scotland in the table and they will see this as a free hit in Glasgow. A nation expects in Scotland and with a solid Euro 2020 campaign under their belt, they could deliver once again here.
Betting tip: Scotland to win the match ($2) – Bet @ Sportsbet
Scotland to win 2-1
Czech Republic vs Wales – Eden Arena
Czech Republic ($1.75)
Two sides looking to take a significant step towards the 2022 World Cup face off as Czech Republic host Wales. The hosts enjoyed a good run at Euro 2020, reaching the last 8 and they will be eager to build on that moving forward. They take on a Wales side that also went well at Euro 2020, reaching the last 16 but the absence of Gareth Bale is sure to hit them hard in this tough looking test. Wales will give this a good go, but the Czech Republic are a good side, and they should prevail here.
Betting tip: Czech Republic to win the match ($1.75) – Bet @ Sportsbet
Czech Republic to win 2-1
Turkey vs Norway – Fenerbache Stadium
Turkey will be looking to put their dismal Euro 2020 campaign behind them as they take on Norway. Despite enduring a tough European Championship run, Turkey are in contention to qualify for the 2022 World Cup and sit only two points behind the Netherlands and their opponents here Norway in Group G. Trying to reach a major tournament is once again the priority for Norway, who have failed to do so for some years and with Erling Haaland in their ranks, there is a growing feeling that this is their time. This should be a really close game, between two good teams – making the draw the most likely outcome.
Betting tip: The match to finish as a draw ($3.5) – Bet @ Sportsbet
Switzerland vs Northern Ireland – Stade de Geneva
Northern Ireland ($12.5)
Switzerland will be looking to make up ground on Italy above them in Group C, as they take on a plucky Northern Ireland side. It has been a solid couple of years for Switzerland, who excelled at Euro 2020, and they will be eager to put themselves on the world stage in Qatar next year. They take on a Northern Ireland side that never know when they are beat and always up their game against the big sides. Northern Ireland will be very organised here, but Switzerland will be patient and should find a way to break them down.
Betting tip: Switzerland to win the match ($1.33) – Bet @ Sportsbet
Switzerland to win 2-0
FIFA European World Cup Qualifiers Multi Bet
We’re backing four results this week as an accumulator with a betting stake of $50:
Czech Republic vs Wales – Czech Republic to win
Switzerland vs Northern Ireland – Switzerland to win
Scotland vs Israel – Scotland to win
Andorra vs England – England to win
A $50 wager would pay out $313.50 if successful at the current odds – Bet @ Sportsbet
After graduating from the University of Auckland (BA – English), Daryl was thrown into the world of sports and horse racing journalism.
Having worked as a racing journalist for two years, he decided to move into the online world of horse racing and sports writing. After years of honing his craft, Daryl became a professional punter in 2009 – with a focus on horse racing, NRL, AFL, NBA, Rugby, NFL, and US college sports. Daryl’s tips have been featured on various websites around the world before joining the GoBet team. When he’s not working, Daryl tries to avoid making bogeys on the golf course.